Originally Posted by Martin Bauer
In my opinion you are still a novice as long as you make progress with 3x5 two times a week.
Imagine someone doing SS 3 times a week, so 3 times 3x5 and he stops making progress and switches to 3x5 two times a wekk? This simply won't work in my opinion.
You have to look at this in the context of the whole program, you may back squat 3x5 two days a week, front squat 3x5 two days a week, Clean 5x3 two times a week, snatch/clean pull 5x3 twice a week. All of a sudden you have a very high volume of total lifts (this does not include going overhead, bench, etc.). Again, programming for more experienced lifters can get incredibly complex. Depending on what you're training for, who fast you recover and a thousand other factors you could potentially be doing much higher or much less volume.
... wasn't this thread supposed to be about why the "3" is important in 3x5? The point is, the 3 is important no matter what level of lifter you are, a total of 15 reps in sets of 5 places a certain kind of stress on your body which it adapts to. When to use that kind of stress to increase strength varies depending on what level of lifter you are.